California Riding Magazine • June, 2010

Winner's Circle

Spooner’s Roll Continues

Richard Spooner began his European spring and summer tour with a bang by becoming the first American to win the big Derby class at the CSI5* in La Baule, France, on May 15. He and Pako were the only clear round over a 21-obstacle track described by some as grueling. They beat out 20 pairs and also got a little revenge for the U.S. after the USET squad finished second to home country France in the previous evening’s Nations Cup competition.

Felling The Competition

Meanwhile, back in California, the Del Mar National wrapped up its 65th year with familiar faces in the winner’s circle. Steffen Peters and Ravel took top honors in the $5,000 FEI CDI3* Grand Prix Freestyle that capped dressage week. Rich Fellers and Flexible closed hunter/jumper week in high style by winning both the Thursday night qualifier, a $25,000 Grand Prix presented by ShowBiz Magazine, and Saturday night’s $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar. It was Fellers’ fourth win of the show’s big class in the last six years, this year earning him a $30,000 payout. Helen McNaught came in second and the showcase event was enjoyed by a sell-out crowd of 4,000.

Bennett-Awad Holds Her Own at Rolex

Temecula based Canadian event trainer and rider Hawley Bennett-Awad finished the Rolex Kentucky Four Star Three Day Event in a very respectable ninth position with Gin & Juice. After dressage, the pair was tied for 21st position, but a penalty-free cross country round moved them up to 11th and a four-fault stadium jumping test edged them into ninth. The notoriously challenging event took place April 21-25 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, KY. It was won by Brit, William Fox-Pitt, with Americans Phillip Dutton and Becky Holder in the second and third spots.